Fancy Footwork & Fitness
by acac Personal Trainer Leigh McCready
So I have this friend–my best friend–and she’s pretty awesome. She’s great at A LOT of things. But one thing she is NOT … is graceful. I’m not sure if she has two left feet, or if she just gets so excited that sometimes that she doesn’t know how to channel all that energy … but she has frequent faller miles.
Example: My friend is a professional organizer and she was working with a client who was super hesitant to get rid of ANYTHING. Eventually, after several sessions, she was able to convince her client to donate a set of dishes that were no longer being used. While her client was in the basement, she used that opportunity to take those dishes out to her car. On her way out, my friend tripped down some poorly lit, steep, front porch steps. She broke EVERY. SINGLE. DISH. on the way down. Knowing there was no way she could confess this to her client, she grabbed up all the pieces she could find and threw them in her trunk. There was no coming back from that … She was bleeding, her pants were ripped and she was mildly concerned about internal injuries, but the only thing she fessed up to was letting ONE sweet little dish slip out of the semi-overflowing crate … big fat fibber!
Which brings me to my topic: Agility Training
Agility is loosely defined as the ability to rapidly change body position or direction while remaining under control, unlike my friend up there. People typically associate agility training with athletic conditioning, however it doesn’t only benefit professionals and elite athletes. Anyone can and SHOULD participate in agility training.
- Agility ladder drills
- Stepping/hopping over cones/hurdles
- Side stepping/shuffling
- Just about anything involving quick feet and change of direction
By focusing on these types of drills, you’re challenging your body to do better, be better and live better – hopefully enabling you to remain functionally independent in the long run.
Let’s take a look at some of the other benefits of Agility Training:
- It’s appropriate for all fitness levels – you can do them at your own pace
- Improved balance – coordination – body control/awareness – stability (injury prevention) – fitness (effective way to burn calories)
- It’s fun! – a great way to change things up and avoid burnout
Not to mention, you’ll be able to perform everyday activities more efficiently:
- playing with your kids/grandkids
- walking your dog
- household chores
- carrying a set of dishes down a small flight of steps…..
Maybe if my friend were a bit more agile, those poor dishes (and her knees) wouldn’t have had to suffer!
For more information about agility training, email Leigh McCready.